I had breast augmentation done fourteen years ago. Do the Saline Breast Implants get weak or leak after a certain amount of time? Is it unsafe at any time for them to remain?
When to Replace Saline Breast Implants?
Doctor Answers (10)
It will be obvious. Replace only when you need to.
One of the advantage of saline filled implants is that it is easy to know when you need to replace them. It is not unsafe for them to remain. Just keep enjoying your results until you notice a distinct decrease in implant size. Usually you will be able to feel the bag itself (the shell of the implant) smaller and folding upon itself, one side or the other. Then contact your plastic surgeon for replacement.
If you have another reason for reoperation, such as a breast lift, then it might be wise to replace 14-year-old implants.
Implants are high tech plastic bags that certainly wear over many years time. They flex and move with your body motions throughout the day. Eventual deflation should come as no surprise.www.expertplasticsurgeon.com/html/other-breast.html#saline-implant-deflation
When patients have silicone gel implants the situation is different. Regularly scheduled special imaging studies (MRI) are suggested by the FDA to be able to tell when leakage occurs, and to assist decisions about replacement.
When to replace breast implants
Thanks for your question -
There's no specific expiration date on implants. On average people who get breast augmentation need an additional procedure every 10-15 years. This is a statistic that is based on all patients requiring additional surgery on the breast who have had breast augmentation.
As always when applying statistics to individuals, your number may be different. You may never need an additional procedure.
If you're not having problems with the implants just continue to enjoy them.
I hope this helps.
When saline breast implants leak, they will shrink
Saline implants do not produce as questionable a situation when they leak as do silicone gel implants. Saline implants generally deflate as they leak and the size difference is noticeable and rapid. Then you replace them. They do not become dangerous in general unless something unusual happens such as infection.
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You're Fine !
Saline implants fail at a rate of about 1% per year so right now you have about a 14% chance that they will fail, good odds for them being intact. If they fail, they will defalte and it is safe! Just relax and wait and see . If they deflate, you will know it and can replace them.
If it ain't broke...
As long as you are happy with your result, leave them alone. Get regular breast exams, do breast self exams, get mammograms. If you are unhappy with them for whatever reason, or if a deflation occurs, then it is time to see the surgeon.
No reason to replace implants
There is no reason to replace saline implants unless they are leaking. If they do leak you will know it soon, since the breast gets smaller very rapidly. The implants are filled with IV saline solution which is absorbed by the surrounding tissues and posses no health risk.
No reason to change unless you are having problems
I agree with the other physicians that if you are not having problems or concerns, there is no real reason to change saline implants at a specific time. We have seen saline implant that are over 20 years old with no problems. One particular patient had over 25 year-old implants and wanted larger ones. They old ones were in perfect shape!
Replace breast implants only if leaking or have complications
Since you have no problems, it is better to leave them alone. The worst case scenario with an old saline implant is rupture or leak. This will quickly deflate leaving a smaller breast. The managment at this point would be replacement. Good luck!
If it's not broke, don't fix it
If you are happy with your breasts then there is no pressing need to make any changes. If you would like to make a change in any aspect of you breasts, you may then want to explore youe options.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.